Highlights of the agreement include a raise to a minimum hourly wage of $13 beginning this July, annual wage adjustments based on the Consumer Price Index, and a clear affirmation of Georgetown’s commitment to workers’ right to freely associate and organize, as well as a pledge that the University will respect the rights of employees to vote for or against union representation without intimidation. Georgetown also promised not only to provide full-time jobs whenever possible, but to seek commitments from its contract employers to do the same.
This resounding success is all the more reason to support the 15 students who have now staged a sit-in at Washington University in St. Louis to demand that university employees get a living wage. On their web site they make a persuasive argument for demanding a living wage, but this says it all:
A living wage will bestow numerous benefits on employees, most importantly lifting them out of poverty. Providing a living wage sends the message that an employer is both literally and figuratively investing in an employee and that he or she is not expendable.
If universities should teach us anything, it should be that people are not expendable!
More from the Student Labor Action Project.